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Dating after divorce

Kori Ellis is an editor and writer based in San Antonio, TX, where she lives with her husband and four children. At SheKnows, she writes about parenting, fashion, beauty and other lifestyle topics. Additionally, Kori has been published i...

How to know you're ready

Divorce can be brutal. And when it's all over, dating may be the last thing on your mind. Once the healing begins, though, you may want companionship again. Dr. Dorree Lynn, sex and relationship expert and founder of DrDorreeLynn.com, provides some insight on recognizing when the time is right.

Mature couple on date

Getting back in the saddle


There's no single time that's right for everyone. After a period of emotional recuperation, however, it helps to get back on the horse, as the saying goes. Dating is not a romantic fairy tale, but with support and courage, we do it anyway.

Almost everyone -- regardless of sex -- shares your fear no matter how outwardly confident she appears. Dating can seem exhausting, and no one wants to risk being hurt again. Everyone has baggage, emotional scars, kids, mortgages and ex-spouses, and going from the "just do it" stage to "I've just done it" is difficult.

A learning experience

The trick is to consider each date an educational experience. Every wise dater learns not to waste time with obviously poor matches, to consider the date an opportunity to learn something new, and to appreciate the lesson. The dating process also teaches you what kind of person you're after, as opposed to showing you the people you would never consider. With time, you discover more about who you are now and the kind of person who attracts you.

Do's and don'ts

The process for dating after divorce is different for everyone. Start slowly using basic common sense:

  • Meet at a neutral place for lunch, a drink or coffee. Leaving is easier on a short date. If you find your date isn't for you, you won't have to choke your way through a boring dinner.
  • No three-date sex rule exists. Have sex when and if you choose. (Just use a condom, please).
  • Stay away from "newly paroled" singles; they have no idea what they want. After a longtime monogomous marriage, these people often are like the proverbial kids in a candy store, ready to hop into bed to sample any and all varieties.
  • Make a wish list... but don't adhere to it too strictly. Surprises, by definition, come when least expected.
  • Date to have fun, not to rewed.

More tips for dating after divorce

How to start dating after divorce
Dating tips for the newly single
Guide to life after divorce


Chances are it's been a while since you've part took in the dating world and a divorce can leave you feeling more discouraged and demotivated than ever. Even when you're ready to jump back into it, dating will be exhausting. Don't feel discouraged in the face of a dating disaster or when there's no chemstiry. The goal isn't to meet Mr. Right #2; the goal is to get back out there and learn the do's and don'ts of dating again.


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